In 1924, Juran became an engineer at Western Electric, the manufacturing section for the Bell system where he analyzed a tiny circuit breaker being made in millions, but being rejected to the extent of 15 per cent in inspection as they could not meet the specification for electric resistance. On analysis, Juran found uniform electric resistance in any given reel but variations were observed from reel to reel. A length of wire from each reel equal in resistance to the mean specification limits was taken. Then the entire reel was cut into pieces of the same length. All these cut wires showed uniform resistance, despite the reel-to-reel variation. This led to a slight drop in defect rate.
Juran then measured and plotted resistance of the finished circuit breakers. They were quite uniform. The average resistance was not at the mean of the specification. The average resistance shifted to the minimum. They then observed the manufacturing process closely. The difficulty was located. The operatives were soldering the wire to the units at a point about 2” from the end of the wire and then cut off the excess. They were required to provide two more inches to the specified length of each piece of wire before it was cut off. The defect prone process then became defect free.
The manufacturing process was analyzed to locate the difficulty. By improving the process, they not only improved the quality (of the circuit breakers) but also reduced the cost of producing them.
The supervisor, however, told Juran that process improvement was the job of a production department, and not of the inspection department where Juran was working. Juran realized this organizational barrier to quality management and warned the Japanese against this pitfall.
What a CEO should do to Initiate Quality Revolution?
Juran recommends the following:
1) Set up a company quality council. The CEO should be its member.
2) Establish quality goals for the whole organization. Also establish quality improvement goals. These should be a part of a corporate plan.
3) Establish the means to measure quality results against quality goals.
4) Review results against goals continuously
5) Give recognition to performance on quality front.
6) Revise the reward system to respond to the changes demanded by world class quality.
Quality Moves Ahead
1800 Informal Inspection
Instrument used: gauges
1922 Concept of conformance quality by GS Radford
SQC pioneered by W Schwhart. It is a precursor to Total Quality Control (TQC) Year. How quality moves ahead?
1931 In formal Inspection
1942 Quality Control Section set up by US war Department
1946 American Society for quality control founded
1950 Cost of quality concept put forward by Joseph Juran
1951 Deming arrives in Japan. Believer in SQC
1952 Deming propagates the principles of TQC to Japanese industry
1954 Reliability engineering introduced as a discipline the by US army.
1956 Total Quality Management (TQM) emerges as a new concept at the hands of Armand Feigenbaum
1961 Zero Defect Concept comes forward form Martin Co.
1979 Crosby puts forward four absolutes of quality
1987 ISO 9000 series approved in its present form
1990 Paradigm shift TQM
Future Trends Customer Centered Quality Control Expert Systems for TQM etc.